COVID-19 has caused so much uncertainty for nearly two years now. Like every other family, we are craving and missing our “old” social life and not living in the fear of the unknown. For us, getting a COVID vaccine and having the kids go back to in-person school was one of the biggest signs of a return to normalcy. It is just what we needed after an exhausting year of remote school while working. The kids were happy to see their friends, we had our in-person school community back, and we had away time from the house.
This return to school has been enabled by the amazing, speedy development of safe COVID vaccines. There are constant reminders that we are still in the midst of a pandemic – masks, weekly testing for the staff and kids, contact tracing calls, and altered protocols for drop off and pick up. But, having the kids in-person at school has made all of us so much happier. We had to return to remote school for a one-week period in November and it was a stark reminder to us of how much we missed our school community last year. We all want our kids in school with their friends and teachers and we want them to be able to do that safely! Now, with Omicron, the threat of remote school looms again.
Our Family Got a COVID-19 Vaccine
My husband and I are fully vaccinated and boosted, and our eligible children are also vaccinated. It has been the best choice for our family and has given us a sense of relief and cheering for science. COVID-19 vaccines give us all hope that there is light at the end of this COVID tunnel. It feels freeing for all eligible members of our family to be vaccinated!
DC Area Moms is thrilled to partner with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to share factual information about the COVID-19 vaccines. This way each one of us can make the best decision for each of our families. While our own household is at fairly low risk of getting seriously ill, we have peace knowing that we aren’t inadvertently giving COVID to friends and family who might be at greater risk.
This is a worldwide pandemic that has been raging for almost two years and we are all exhausted. Getting vaccinated is the quickest way to end it. With getting a vaccine, we show our neighbors, family, and friends near and far that #WeCanDoThis together. I understand that getting a vaccine is a personal choice that we each make. If you have questions about the vaccines, talk to your doctor and research more information at cdc.gov/coronavirus.
Who is Eligible for the COVID-19 Vaccine?
Anyone over age 5 is eligible for safe, effective vaccines against COVID-19. These are free vaccines for all regardless of health insurance and/or immigration status. Children ages 5-11 get a smaller vaccine dosage tailored to their age group. Ages 12 years and older receive the same dosage of the COVID vaccine as adults. Everyone vaccinated and 12+ should get a booster. A booster is an extra dose that makes it more likely that your antibodies can help protect you against severe illness. Learn more and find vaccines near you at www.vaccines.gov.
What are COVID Vaccine Side Effects?
In clinical trials, children had the same kinds of temporary side effects from COVID vaccines that adults have, such as pain at the injection site, tiredness, or headache. My three children were a little tired the next day (but went to school) and their arms were slightly sore, but overall, they were fine. I remind myself and them that COVID is a greater threat than any potential side effects of the vaccine. Plus, at this point, if we were to get COVID, current data suggests our symptoms would be milder.
One other side effect is the feeling of relief and thankfulness! We made getting our kids the vaccine something to celebrate. We stopped by a local bakery to get a treat afterwards. After all, they are helping our world by reducing the transmission of this virus. AND keeping themselves and their family safe! It was a memory I don’t want to forget.
Getting a COVID Vaccine is Super Easy
Vaccines are completely free for adults and children (ages 5+). Vaccines for are available at more than 30,000 locations and many locations do require appointments. Contact your child’s school or health care provider for vaccine clinic dates and times. Or search for a COVID-19 Vaccine for children on vaccines.gov or text your ZIP code to 438829 (GETVAX). You can also call 1-800-232-0233. OR ask a friend where they plan to get their child vaccinated. You could even go together to make a memory.
Almost 8 million Americans under 18 have gotten COVID. Since August, hospitalization rates for children with COVID have reached record highs. Millions of people have safely received a COVID vaccine. These vaccines are the most closely monitored vaccines in U.S. history and are being monitored just as closely in children too!
Has your family been vaccinated? Collectively, #WeCanDoThis.